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Old 03-11-2011, 09:30 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by jbrookeiv View Post
Dude! That's easily $500 worth of wine kits! Never made one, so I can't help you out, but that is a MAJOR score.
Based on what I see there it might be double that.

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Old 03-12-2011, 10:10 PM   #12
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Sorting out all the ingredients correctly might be tough. There may even be a few things missing. You might be able to do some research to find out exactly what goes with each kit, but it might take a lot of looking. If you have a ferment-on-premises store anywhere near you, they might know each kit well enough to tell you exactly what should be in each. Even if you get things switched around a little, you won't likely create too much havoc.

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Old 03-20-2011, 06:38 PM   #13
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OH What fun!!

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Old 03-20-2011, 06:51 PM   #14
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Definitely taste the juice before using. If it was stored for awhile in a hot, humid environment it may be rancid. If room temp or cooler should be good if properly vacuum sealed.

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Old 03-20-2011, 07:49 PM   #15
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I have had good and bad experience with old kits. I had Blush Zinfandel that was 6 years old (I kid you not) and it came out absolutely stunning. On the other hand I had a white wine (can't remember what grape) that was a few years old and it was had crystallized solid... When I added hot water to it, it was all brown and tasted like pears... Tossed it.
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Old 03-21-2011, 01:19 AM   #16
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Something to consider. With all the handling , storage, etc that these kits have gone through it might be a good idea to sanitize each of the bags of wine before opening and anything else in plastic (like flavorings and finings).

I just started a kit that was 4+ years old a few weeks ago and am seriously doubting the outcome of it. But the kit in my case came with my gear that i bought used on craigslist and was worth a shot. My best advice for you is if you have the spare fermenter just go for it. The instructions for my kit were pretty well written, and as others have mentioned you can find the instructions on the web, just be sure to replace the yeast.

If you arent sure where to start or only want to make 1 kit at a time, consider maing them by the date on the boxes, oldest first etc. Also, you could ship some to CT for me to play with . I'd be happy to pay shipping and help you with some research on the rest .
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Old 03-21-2011, 01:29 AM   #17
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Nice haul.

I use a 10 gallon Brute trash can and lid (the gray ones and white ones are FDA-approved for food) for primary fermentation of kit wines. It works great. You don't need a tight seal and an airlock for primary like with beer. If any of your kits have grape-skin packs, you'll need to stir with a sanitized paddle daily.

When primary fermentation is done, rack into a 6 gallon glass carboy and fit an airlock on it. Basically, just follow the directions. It's easy and the higher-end kits make excellent wine. The less-expensive kits tend to make a wine with less body and aroma, but still good.
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Old 04-06-2011, 06:36 PM   #18
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I'm in the neighborhood and have some empty fermenters if you need a hand disposing of the goods. PM me if you're looking to get rid of them. I'd pick them up at your convenience.
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Old 01-20-2012, 06:44 PM   #19
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So I finally got off my ass and started two of these kits. I took the bags out and soaked them in some Star San while I sanitized my two new wine buckets. The two that I opened looked good with a deep purple color and smelled and tasted like concentrated grape juice. Pretty damn tasty if you ask me. I picked up all new yeast but unfortunately even though I had the wife bring the old yeast packs to the HBS they gave her new ones for all but one which was needed for one of the kits that I already dumped into the fermenter. So I rehydrated the old yeast pack that was still within the expiration date and it did proof well and pitched it. I do have some questions as all the kits have very similar instructions but not the same.

The first kit said to add 2L of hot water to the bucket then add packet #1 and mix, then add the large juice pack and if any secondary juice pack were included to add them later on during step 3 or 4 I canít remember exactly. Well my kit had a second small pack of crushed grapes but the pack itself said to add on day one. So I made the decision to just add it with the main juice pack. I rinsed the bags out with cool water and filled the fermenter to the 6 gallon mark and my hydro reading was 1.100 on one kit and 1.094 on another so it was on target. But the 2nd kit said to add the powder pack #1 after dumping the large juice bag in and not to dissolve it in hot water. And it also had a bag of crushed grapes along with a mesh bag that it said to sterilize and add the crushed grapes to it and to tie it up and let it float on top of the wine pushing it down every day. This to me didnít seem like a good idea so I made this kit the same way as the first starting with a few liters of hot water and just mixing the crushed grapes in with the juice.

My other concern is about adding the oak. One kit only had one pack of large oak chunks and the other had 4 packs. 2 were powder and 2 were small shredded pieces. Again these kits were opened by someone else so I donít know if all of these are for just one kit, the yeast and clear gel and instruction were in sealed bags but not the oak or spices. I also want to age this in an oak barrel I have so I just used one pack of oak in each thinking that I can correct the oak in the barrel? My last concern is that all the instructions state that there may me elderberry or other flavor spice packs included. Is there a style of wine that uses these or do they all? None of the kits that I separated so far has these in them but I do have a full box of mixed supplies that I got with all these kits that has dozens of these spice packs along with dozens more oak packs and. The two kits I made so far is a Shiraz and a Chianti. Any idea if I should have added anything else to these?

Anyway yesterday was the second day of fermentation and they are bubbling away like mad!

Thanks for any help!


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